Some 60 years after the Far Eastern War ended, this innovative collection brings together five distinguished UK-based scholars and five from Japan to reappraise their respective countries' leadership in the Malaya and Burma campaigns. This leadership is analyzed on various levels, ranging from the grand strategic to operational.
The Japanese contributors examine the reasons for their forces brilliant advances in 1941-42, whereas the British writers have to account for the disastrous defeat, characterized by the poor leadership of senior commanders such as Bennett and Percival. Between 1943 and 1945, the tables were turned dramatically, so the failure of Japanese command decisions then comes under critical scrutiny and the British have to explain how defeat was transformed into victory.
Using both archival and published sources, Japanese scholars are now in a position to reappraise their war leaders, including Tojo and Mutaguchi, from a much more critical standpoint than was possible previously. But it was their flawed command "system," ultimately involving the emperor, that was most at fault.
Although certain aspects of the British campaigns have already received saturation coverage, this book provides new perspectives on the failures of Allied leadership in Malaya and Burma; the morale and fighting spirit of the British forces in the heroic struggle for Imphal and Kohima; and the all-important role of British and US air power. Not least, General Sir William Slim's remarkable achievement as commander of XIV Army is critically assessed but found to be fully deserved. Above all, this volume should stimulate interest in different methods and styles of military leadership in view of the contrasting approaches of the British and Japanese in World War II.
"This excellent work...throws new light on one of the most neglected campaigns of the Second World War, and is an important work for anyone interested in war in Asia or in strategy and leadership." - Albert Nofi, The NYMAS Review
Series: Cass Series--Military History and Policy
Number Of Pages: 175
Published: 26th August 2004
Publisher: F CASS PUBN
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.57 x 16.15
Weight (kg): 0.45
Edition Number: 1